Vladimir Katriuk, alleged Nazi war criminal, dies in Quebec

A Quebec man who was suspected of being a Nazi war criminal and being involved in a massacre in 1943 has died, his lawyer said Thursday.

The man in his 90s was suspected of being involved in a massacre in 1943

Vladimir Katriuk had a honeybee farm in Ormstown, Que. The Simon Wiesenthal Center recently ranked Katriuk No. 4 on its top-10 list of suspected former Nazis.

A Quebec man who was suspected of being a Nazi war criminal and involvement in a massacre in 1943 has died, his lawyer said Thursday.

Vladimir Katriuk had been ill for a long time, Orest Rudzik said in an interview.

"He passed away, I think it was last Friday," Rudzik said from Oakville, Ont. "It was a stroke or something do with a stroke."

Katriuk had been living in the Quebec town of Ormstown and had been an avid beekeeper for years.

News of Katriuk's death emerged just several hours after the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs said Ottawa should take the necessary steps to ensure that he be held accountable if he were found guilty of war crimes committed in collaboration with the Nazis.

The Russian Embassy in Ottawa called on the Harper government a few weeks ago to support a criminal case against Katriuk and said the Ukraine native was involved in a March 1943 massacre in Khatyn, Byelorussia, which is now Belarus.

Jewish human rights organization B'nai Brith Canada issued a statement after hearing about Katriuk's death.

"Sadly, Katriuk's death in Canada points out the exact concern that we repeatedly raised, that justice delayed is justice denied," said David Matas, the group's senior legal counsel.

Katriuk, who moved to Canada in the 1950s and was said by Rudzik to be 93, previously denied any involvement in war crimes.

Rudzik said he was informed of the death by a relative of Katriuk's and that he last spoke to his client a few months ago.

With files from CBC News

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